October 26, 2020

Boxing judge to be investigated after footage appears to show him using PHONE during Ritson vs Vazquez title fight

Boxing judge to be investigated after footage appears to show him using PHONE during Ritson vs Vazquez title fight

judge Terry O’Connor is to be investigated by the board of control after he appeared to be on his phone during the Lewis Ritson versus Miguel Vazquez fight.

And promoter Eddie Hearn has called for the official to be ‘removed’ if the claims are found to be true.

Terry O'Connor is ringside judging Lewis Ritson versus Miguel Vazquez - but his attention seems to be elsewhere

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Terry O’Connor is ringside judging Lewis Ritson versus Miguel Vazquez – but his attention seems to be elsewhereCredit: Twitter@markstaylor1980
Many people think judge Terry O'Connor appears to be looking at a mobile phone ringside

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Many people think judge Terry O’Connor appears to be looking at a mobile phone ringsideCredit: Twitter@markstaylor1980

A photo was circulated on social media that appears to show the 67-year-old looking at a mobile as he is seated ringside.

Matchroom boss Hearn, who promoted the show in question that saw Ritson secure a controversial points win, called for action.

Hearn shared the photo on Twitter, writing: “If that’s a phone (and I presume it is) then then BBBofC should immediately remove him.”

Eddie Hearn wants action if it is proved the judge was on his phone

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Eddie Hearn wants action if it is proved the judge was on his phone

And WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman also retweeted the snap, writing: “This image is extremely troubling to any person involved in boxing”.

Now British Boxing Board of Control general secretary Robert Smith has promised to investigate the matter.

He told Boxing News: “I’m very, very disappointed. This has to be looked at and investigated as it will be.

“I am so frustrated that this seems to have happened. After the hard work we do behind the scenes we have something like this emerging.

“Personally I am so disappointed. I can’t say anything more on this at this point.”

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WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman thinks O'Connor was indeed on a mobile device

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WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman thinks O’Connor was indeed on a mobile device
Lewis Ritson somehow won on points against Miguel Vazquez

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Lewis Ritson somehow won on points against Miguel VazquezCredit: ©Mark Robinson Ltd

In terms of the bout he was judging, O’Connor awarded it to home fighter Ritson, 117-111.

This was despite Sky Sports commentators, pundits and even Hearn himself believing Vazquez had comfortably done enough to win the fight.

Fellow judge Michael Alexander also scored it to Ritson, 115-113 with Marcus McDonnell handing it to the Mexican, 116-113.

Smith added that the ‘fight will be looked at’ as he ‘can completely understand why people felt Vazquez had won’.

SunSport has contacted the British Boxing Board of Control for further comment.

It’s not the first-time O’Connor has been caught up in controversy.

He was one of three judges who gave Callum Smith a wide-points win against John Ryder in November last year.

Many thought Ryder had shocked the champ into his first ever loss. O’Connor gave that fight 117-111 too.

The Birmingham judge was also slammed by promoter Mick Hennessey in 2017 when he gave Joseph Parker a 118-110 decision against Hughie Fury.

Hennessey said that O’Connor had ‘buckled under pressure’.